We’ve been experiencing uncomfortably high temperatures (and insanely high humidity) for the last several weeks in central Europe, meaning I’ve had no desire whatsoever to turn on my oven and get baking. That doesn’t mean, of course, that my notorious appetite for all things chocolate diminished in the slightest. Far from it! I was into my collection of no-bake dessert recipes within minutes of temps topping 90 degrees last week.
This pie has a very special place in my heart, as it’s been my dad’s favorite for as long as I can remember. In fact, I can scarcely remember a birthday or Father’s Day celebration in my childhood in which it didn’t make a welcome appearance. The filling is rich and creamy, cradled in a delicate chocolate cookie crust and topped with drizzled chocolate sauce and grated dark chocolate. I took it a step further (maybe too far?) on this occasion with the addition of chopped miniature Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. A word of warning: this pie is not for the faint of heart … or dieters … or diabetics … but is definitely worth a try if you’ve got a peanut butter lover in your midst!
Note: If you’d like to craft a lower-fat version of this pie, use 1/3-fat cream cheese, reduced or low-fat sweetened condensed milk, reduced fat peanut butter and fat-free Cool Whip. I’ve made both versions and the flavor variations are minimal.
PEANUT BUTTER PIE WITH CHOCOLATE COOKIE CRUST
Yield | 8 to 10 servings
1 1/3 cup chocolate cookie crumbs (approximately 30 crushed cookies)
3 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted
1 tbsp finely granulated sugar
8 ounces cream cheese
1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
3/4 cup creamy or chunky peanut butter
3 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 cup freshly whipped cream
1 to 2 tsp chocolate syrup, to serve
1 ounce grated dark chocolate, to serve
In a medium-sized mixing bowl, stir together cookie crumbs, melted chocolate and sugar. Press firmly and evenly into a 9-inch pie plate. Chill crust for 30 minutes.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat cream cheese on medium speed until fluffy. Beat in sweetened condensed milk and peanut butter, blending for 1 minute. On low speed, add lemon juice and vanilla extract, blending until just combined.
Remove bowl from electric mixer and gentle fold in freshly whipped cream. Pour pie filling into the chilled chocolate cookie crust and refrigerate for 4 hours or until set. To serve, drizzle with chocolate syrup and sprinkle with grated dark chocolate, if desired.
As a child growing up in the beautiful (but climatologically moody) Pacific Northwest, Memorial Day weekend held a special significance for my nature-loving family: the re-opening of campgrounds, parks, and trailheads closed for the winter months by snow, storms, or flood conditions. While prohibitively large crowds often kept my parents, brother, and I from actually camping out over the long holiday weekend, its arrival never failed to produce excited anticipation for what promised to be three unforgettable months of hiking, camping, and outdoor adventure.
Camping – and I mean realcamping, which doesn’t involve electricity or lodging on wheels – is one of my all-time favorite summer past-times. I love finding the perfect spot for my tent, building a small campfire, and searching for shooting stars in the clear night’s sky. This experience is, of course, made infinitely better by the addition of marshmallows, graham crackers, and a handful of Hershey’s bars. That’s right – I’m talking about the oohey-gooey awesome deliciousness of the humble s’more.
Naturally, I couldn’t get out of the house last weekend to go camping [sad face]. I blame it on an injured back, rain, and something called “campground reservations”. Never one to be deterred from – well, anything – I decided to bring s’mores inside. I considered S’mores Dip (still on the agenda) and S’mores Pie (definitely on the agenda), but settled on Triple Chocolate S’mores Bark because – SURPRISE! – I love chocolate.
Best. Decision. Ever.
In all honesty, my attempt at this recipe didn’t turn out nearly as pretty as the original (check out A Kitchen Addiction‘s gorgeous photos!). Appearances aside, it was easy to make and super delicious! I highly recommend this sweet treat for anyone that doesn’t care for the campfire version (*GASP*), or is rained (or injured/reserved) out of the great outdoors. Enjoy!
TRIPLE CHOCOLATE S’MORES BARK
24 ounces dark chocolate
8 ounces white chocolate
3/4 cup (3-4 sheets) graham crackers, broken into pieces
1/2 cup marshmallow bits
2 (1.55 ounce) Hershey’s milk chocolate bars, broken into pieces
Line a 15×10 inch cookie sheet with wax or parchment paper.
Melt dark chocolate according to instructions on package, making sure to stir periodically.
Melt white chocolate according to instructions on package, making sure to stir periodically.
Spread melted dark chocolate onto prepared cookie sheet. Spoon white chocolate over the top. Swirl white chocolate through dark chocolate using a knife or thin rubber spatula.
Sprinkle with graham cracker pieces, marshmallow bits, and broken chocolate bars. Lightly press topping into chocolate.
Place in refrigerator for at least one hour to cool and set.
Break into pieces and store in an airtight container.